More than 1,700 households opt for HDB scheme which helps elderly at home

MORE than 1,700 households have applied for the Housing Board's scheme that gives them elderly-friendly features such as grab bars, ramps and slip-resistant tiles, said National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan on Friday.

Mr Khaw revealed these numbers in a blog entry on Ease (Enhancement for Active Seniors), which was launched as a pilot programme in July last year, and made nationwide in March this year.

Such features, he said, reduces the risk of falls at home, and allows seniors to age in place.

Under Ease, households whom have residents aged 70 and above can apply directly to HDB, and pay a heavily subsidised rate for the improvements. The amount they shell out ranges between $100 and $250, depending on the flat type.

To help residents grasp the benefits of the scheme, some HDB officers also carry around iPads that have slideshows on Ease in the four official languages and five commonly spoken dialects including Cantonese, Teochew and Hokkien.

The Housing Board has also made it possible for residents to apply for Ease through its mobile app.